Canon 300mm f/4 with canon 1.4 or 2X extender (mk3 vs mk2) or 100-400mm

Started Jul 2, 2013 | Questions thread
bhollis Veteran Member • Posts: 3,735
Re: Canon 300mm f/4 with canon 1.4 or 2X extender (mk3 vs mk2) or 100-400mm

dhogaza wrote:

bhollis wrote:

If your primary interest is birds, I'd recommend the 400 f/5.6L. Although it doesn't have IS, for birds in flight, you don't really need IS.

I disagree strongly with this. You need to learn when it helps, and when it gets in the way. In another response, I posted a couple of cliff swallows in flight, IS in panning mode really helped.

It is a good lens, though.

Well, I suppose it depends on what shutter speed you want to use for BIF.  If you want to use a relatively slow shutter speed, in order to get some background blur for example, then I think that IS in panning mode can be useful.  But if you're using a faster shutter speed, well over 1/1000th second, as I think most BIF shooters do, then I think IS becomes far less important, particularly with good panning technique.

In my opinion, for BIF, the most useful features by far are reach, sharpness, and fast AF.  And in these respects, the 400 f/5.6L delivers better than any other reasonably priced option, IMO.

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